1. THE THEFT OF INDIA
THE EUROPEAN CONQUESTS OF
2. • In the three centuries that followed Vasco da Gama's discovery of the sea passage from
Europe to India, European nations made a beeline for India's fabled riches, its spices, gold,
and diamonds. Though they came for trade and business, as well as the joy of exploring a
new territory, the borders between exploration and exploitation quickly crossed.
• The Theft of India details the heated battle for riches that played out between the British,
the French, the Dutch and the Portuguese and the impact this had on Indians. It describes
the political scheming, agreements and betrayals, slavery, scamming, and arrogance of
these foreign powers as they fought to strengthen their hold on this huge and 'strange'
ABOUT THE BOOK
4. Vasco da Gama anchored his
ships on May 20,1948 close
north of Calicut -The Indian
Calicut was 'The City Of Spices'
& thus a point of interest of
merchants from Arab nations as
well as the Dutch, Portugese, &
even the Chinese . And then
arrived the British.
5. Spices from India were well known in Europe.They were much in demand, especially
pepper, but they had usually come by sea to the northern ports of the Indian Ocean and
then been taken overland. ( Pepper was the most important item imported from south
Pepper had been used in ancient Egypt as a part of the armoury (black pepper was found
stuffed in the nose of Egyptian pharaoh Ramesses II as part of the mummification
Pepper was imported from south India by the Greeks and Romans.. The use of pepper
spread across the Roman Empire. In Rome itself, Emperor Domitian built pepper
warehouses, the remains of which are still visible. It was used as a medicine until the
Romans started using it as a condiment.
( Codiment :a substance that is used to add flavour to food )
6. India became a major drain on the Roman treasury . There was a market in India for
Roman goods - clothing, metals, pigments, medicines and cosmetics - and especially for
Mediterranean red coral.
The coral was not only valued as attractive jewellery, but also as a charm against evil and
In Europe, when the Middle Ages replaced the Dark Ages, the demand in Europe forspices
increased.. Early on in the Middle Ages, spices were the most costly food item.
Moving forward through the Middle Ages,due to a decrease in price, a greater class of
people could now consume pepper
The majority of the distribution was under the hands of Italian traders.
8. The Portuguese had a long history of conflict with Islam
From the twelth century onwards, rumours had circulated in Europe of Christian empires in the
This discovery has inspired the king of Portugal to despatch Vasco da Gama further east.
In 1492 Vasco da Gama had been sent by the king of Portugal, John II, to seize French ships that
were attacking Portuguese shipping.
The Muslim traders were extremely hostile to the Portuguese.
On 13 August 1498, nearly three months after his arrival, Vasco da Gama sent some presents to
the Zamorin and announced that he wished to leave for Portugal.
In March 1500, only six months after Vasco da Gama's return, a Portuguese fleet of thirteen
powerfully armed ships sailed for India.
This ship was commanded by Pedro lvares Cabral and was haunted by disaster.
Cabral had broken his ties with the Zamorin of Calicut.
Cochin was set to become Portugal's most important base in Malabar
9. Before Vasco da Gama finally left Cochin, he entered into a formal agreement
with the raja to build a Portuguese factory.
He died after only three months and was buried in the church of Santo
Antonio, later renamed after St Francis, in Cochin.
His body was returned to Portugal in 1539.
10. The English economy had blossomed in the early sixteenth century with large
exports of wool to continental Europe.
In 1553, Russian merchants sent a crew of three ships to locate a path from
Russia's north to the Indies. Passages through such a way would assist to avoid a
clash with the Spanish and Portuguese, who dominated the southern waters. It
was a very dangerous operation.
The English merchants who supported the journey to build a north-east route
were creating an entirely new English financial structure
The Russian Company was formed in 1555, shortly after the English expedition to
the north-east of Russia.
THE ENGLISH - VENTURE CAPITALISTS AND ADVENTURERS
11. Queen Elizabeth negotiated with the Sultan of Turkey and The Levant company was
granted the trading monopoly with the Russian Company.
In 1580, the Crowns of Portugal and Spain were reunited.
The English victory over the Spanish Navy in 1588 was also hailed as a win over
Portugal. It was claimed that if the English could beat the Spanish navy, they could
win the war undermine the Portuguese ships' dominance in the Indian Ocean and
capture part of their commerce.
Things did not start well for the English. A year after the victory over the Spanish,
certain merchants whose names have been lost but who were most likely involved in
the Levant trade agreed to fund an expedition across the point of Africa.
Thomas Smythe was the primary factor behind the establishment of the East India
Company. He was a foreign trade trader in London,and he became the first governor
of the country.
12. On December 31, 1600, the charter of 'The Governor and Company of
Merchants of London dealing into the East Indies' was officially signed.
James Lancaster, who had sailed to the Malay Peninsula in 1591,was assigned
to head the Company's first mission to the East.
It was prohibited to export English coins.
The primary money used in the East by the Portuguese and others was
Spanish, particularly the silver coins of eight rials - the 'pieces of eight' of the
The company asked the Enlgish Royal Mint to print the foreign coins.
13. India was eventually chosen as one of the locations for the Company's third
expedotion. Its primary mission was to collect spices from the eastern islands,
but it was also tasked with investigating the market for English woollen
products in exchange.
Jahangir gave William Hawkins the first given commercial privileges in Surat.
However, his authority was gradually weakened by jealous Mughal officials and
Portuguese priests and english sailors.
Hawkins had been in Agra for almost two years and had departed with no
concessions for the Company. At Surat, he caught up with another English
mission commanded by Sir Henry Middleton, which had similarly failed to
establish commerce with India.
14. In 1615, William Keeling, an amateur producer of Shakespeare's plays, led a
Company voyage to India and the East. He was eager to extend the Company's
activities after being appointed commanderinchief. He cruised down India's coast,
occasionally exchanging fire with Portuguese ships. In March
Sir Thomas Roe had been dispatched to negotiate with Jahangir by James I, who
had extended the Company's charter on a more permanent basis in 1609 at the
expense of the Company.
French played a huge role in European conquest of India
In 1664 french established a company that could trade with India -
compagnie des indes.
The enterprise was commanded by the director general of french
commerce in India ,Francis caron
French captured st.thome on east coast of India,which was previously
taken by the dutch.
In India french feared an attempt by dutch to recapture st.thome
The french send Francois martin to plead with the ruler of bijapur for
grant of some land.
16. Dutch had also persuade ruler of Golconda to aid them.
French was allowed to choose their destination.martin together with his
en marched south to the plot he had recently acquired.he arrived in
april 1674 and began to construct a settlement.this became known as
The colony prospered until 1689,when a war broke out again between
France and dutch republic
In this war martin had to surrender to dutch.
Treaty of ryswick in 1697
In 1707 martin moved company Indian
administration to pondicherry and martin was
appointed as director general of french affairs in
In 1706 Louis XIV passed away
By the time pondicherry was prosperous city but
there was financial problems in french trade.
1723 french resumed their trade operations.
French to spice trade.
They set up trading post at mahe.
Joseph francois dupleix -director
Dupleix made good relation with dost ali khan nawab of carnatic
Capture of madras
In 1746 there was an encounter between British and french.
After capture of madras dupleix was in dilemma
Conflict between french army and mahfuz khans army
Mahfaz khan defeated by french. Dupleix is now master of madras and
made paradise his military governor.
He decided to take fort st.David and completely destroy the the British
on coromantal coast.
Britain government sent royal fleet to aid company.
On 6 Sep 1748 main attack on pondicherry began by boscowen.
May 1749-treaty of aix-la-chapelle.
British capture devikota.
Deccan was under control of nizam.
Nawab of carnatic anwar ud din was killed in an assault led by french.
Chanda sahib new nawab of carnatic.
Nazir jang was shot by french military .then muzaffar jang was instantly
proclaimed as new nizam of Deccan.
Chanda sahib - nawab of carnatic.
French at the heights of their power.dupleix was master of all south
19. Dismiss of dupleix
He bribed marathas to switch sides
and support french.
He was undermined in Europe.
French ambassador had talks with
the British government and decided
to dismiss dupleix.
1 august 1754 charles godehue
arrived of pondicherry.
Godeheu entered into negotiations
with east India company.